Happens To All Of Us:

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Love Spent:

and when you said you were telling the truth, knowing full  well it was an exquisite lie; throwing me back to when I was a yout’, instinctively, I began to cry.  So many times I held you close to me, impossible feelings rippled my shuddering torso; your infidelity a distinct liberty, denying sweet love time to grow.  Those unreserved secretly planned forays: disappeared, and nearly always gone.  Those new introductions to spiced-up foreplay, should not have expected them to last so long.  Shattered my heart thousand times, poisoned arrows through my left eye; the way you sold me, so sublime, instantly made me want to curl up and die.  Meant so intrinsic’ly much to me, couldn’t possibly think of any other.  Things I sensed, felt, could inherently foresee, made me shrivel and stop, immediately turn sour.  Disappointment dribbled the corners of my mouth, so bereft and distraught, completely gave in; desperation half-enticed me to shout.  consigned to this hapless way of living.

And when you said you’d had enough, I dropped the glass and kicked your chair; left me toiling in conditions so rough, stupid! Crazily pulling-out my hair.  Oh yes!  I love you still.  Guess I always will; difficult times spawn angry rhymes.  Holding on resolutely until, my ethereal mind fetters undeserving will.  Feeling more bitter than freshly picked lime, knowing you perpetrated such an evil crime.

Nature’s Promise:

Colours abound, nature surrounds

Red leaves, moulding green sleeves

Brown furry-grained barks, sun-drenched

Witheringly flailed sparks.  Robin’s

Breast flees untold nests; frog

Croaks, avoiding care-free boats

Nature harvests dependant supplicates

Holding steadfast, firm; succoring

Ground burrowing, heedless worms

Birds chit, chatter, flowers flit

Flatter; dying almost before born

Sunlight’s rays ‘excitingly’ warn

Burning fatal holes, playing destroyer’s

Role.  Rivers exude bursting banks

Otters retreat, populating protective

Flanks; fishes glitter, splash; left

Alone at last; water secure

Willing springs rain, fall some more

Trees play their part, lovingly

Gracing beautified horizons. Musk

Driven winds start, blowing homeless

Leaves upwards, approaching summers

Haven.  Flowers colorfully resound

Blown flat, around into ground

Chilled waters ripple, splash; faithfully

Awaiting sunlight’s glitter, to clash


copyright: Mar.  2012…. Henry York



Poetry’s War: against Science

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Word: on attack

History is dead!  subsumed between an amalgamation of Literature and its independent subset Poetry; Poetry relentlessly attempts to usurp the time-worn umbrella that was Literature.  Having extracted her/ himself from Literature’s protective disclosure, Poetry attempts to strike an independent balance, from the said mother-figure, Literature; incurring a no-holds barred war against their mutual assailant, Science.  The altercation spills over, is eventually brought to legal mediation; a literary lawsuit brought by an ambivalent Literature, on Poetry’s behalf.  We now witness Poetry’s self-delivered summing-up address:

And you said the focal incriminating point against me, Poe’sy, prepared with the most vocal debilitating dishonesty, is intrinsic unmistakable value: referred to in this argument as evidential fact.  Mr Science , be sure to keep instinctive cognitive track ; the etymological course, grounding my literary attack will be so impulsive and acute, inexorably preventing you from compelling me to retract, as in the days of my yout’, when I would be privileged to stay at the back.  The things I could not label, against you, for fear of your support gurus: curt, trivial foolish insensitivities, test tube babies, a glut of computerised bric-a-brac, a whole load of indefensible grievous flack.  Simplistic despicable unreasonable diatribe, having not a place to hide, no place in my awe-inspiring almanac.  Throughout the popularised duration of that joke, your friend, now repeated again, consigned to recorded annals as History; shamelessly diffusing without due care and attention, for children’s education, alluding criminally bespoke irreverence, as you pretended to the hornet’s nest, that is indefinable mystery.  Wholly swallowed in your protruding fat gut, giving a falsely accrued blend; landing mankind, civilisation to be exact, in a crass, unfathomable rut.

Hence you perch on that sad hill, mourning your defeat to Truth still, not having an inkling where to turn, when your incorruptible assimilation start to burn, revolving in complete confusion, whilst immersed in the most serious of altercations.  My grievance against you: factual, non-infinitive, ontological to the extreme, Mr. Science, is: relevance, instinctual reams of joy, unbridled pleasure, inspirational heights at a glance, as; opposed to guessing when physical world began, carbon dating in a trance, obscene conditional balance; not knowing the weight of stars, or the universe extends, how far?  the attitudinal personification of lightning himself, the gratitude and intonation of mother Nature and her whelps, mystic revelations, bestowed upon untold nations.  The power of the word, as yet totally unheard: Word’s metamorphosing order, intimidating shower, plentiful like rain, purposefully gauging and amazing progressive gain.  Mr.  Science you are undeniably guilty, of rendering fickle mankind filthy; a charge you are unable to withstand, especially as, now, I am about to raise my hand.

Who is this crazy madman, with perpetually swollen knowledge glands?  Always assuming the highest portion, never sparing thought for me, Poe’sy, and the strength of blessed inspiration.  The world revolves on my smallest finger, neither care nor thought how it began, or extent it is at liberty to linger.  Your first and only witness, Mr. Charles indomitable Darwin: does he realise, where-ever-he may be, the world he corrupted now encased in material sin?  Is he a member of that class of gin?  Fire-spawned, insidiously horned enmeshed and harbouring, mankind’s destruction in the final Armageddon.  Can you seriously say, in all Mr. Science’s arousing foreplay, evolution and its full array: committment to change, philosophy arranged, is nothing but a totality to deter revolution, to; eternally confuse those religious fanatics, with self-righteous indignation.All evolution purports, has long-sinced been harnessed in God’s report: issued through men, consolidated in progressive trends; from an absolute beginning to an infinite world without end.  I shall now rest my case, quite satisfied I have buried you, Mr Science, without trace.

Postmodern History: 

civilisation is under attack, for many a distant moon

Besieged, over-run, we can’t keep track

Water supplies depend on freak monsoons

The army is over-stretched

Challenged by a heathen at  the gate

This report may seem far-fetched

We’re in no discernible position to over-elaborate

The Queen is a respectable octogenarian

Her grip, so relaxed, its a touch

An age of bogus disciplinarians

Bank balances have swollen quite enough

Vandals have breached, broken through

Inner walls; empire over-run virtually in ruins

Exhausted militant auxiliaries refute all

Emergency calls, home-guard emaciated

Falling.  Food supplies are at distinct

Premium; domestic pets and horsemeat

Placed on residual menu. Let expendables

Eat cake, drink poisoned rum.  No food or

Provisions for who neglected Inland revenue

The river of greed burst over-flowing banks

Whole countries rendered bankrupt

Merciless plunder of what should be

Sacrosanct; planet earth  set to self destruct

International border lines dissolved, non-existent

Affluence is power, great sin it absolves

Gap between rich and poor  an

inescapable predicament


copyright:  Mar.  2012 …..Henry York


Two worlds: which did you choose?

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Prophecy: a message of divine will and purpose……

The word of JAH/ God: corrupted in Adam, whom JAH forgave, and prophesied through Enoch, seventh in JAH/ God’s line of ‘Divinity.’  It is said, on His return to earth The Word shall be born of a virgin, and crucified (Psalms 22.) for the salvation of mankind.  ‘The Revelation’ of JAH, in flesh, is a committment of Truth and Faith; for those ‘who did not see and believed still,’ unto irrefutable knowledge of JAH glory.

Jesus, The Word, was prophesied long before his actual coming; through ages the Faithful and True awaited the fulfillment of JAHWORD; delivered through virgin birth.  The visiting kings were testimony (epiphany) of Jesus Christ’s transcendence, of: faiths, time, language, Peoples and nations.  The ‘leap of faith’ required for one to know Mary was righteous conception, without physical/ human pollution, delivering through virgin birth, is; a stumbling block for those who know not The Power of JAH; one must abjure Sin, foregoing perdition: the living rendition of these sacrifices, to increase in faith, become Truth, standing witness for Christ The Living Word and, therefore, the unquestioned authority of JAH/ God.  those of Us, resting in the knowledge, of JAH: omnipotent, all-conquering, all-knowing supremacy need no assurance, of things that must and have assuredly come to pass.  The Living JAH has no affinity what-so-ever with Death; who holds latent familiarity with mankind, not with The Living Word who is unquestionably JAH; referred to as spirit.  The etymological derivation of the word spirit [I am totally convinced without any research what-so ever] is closely connected and aligned, in connotation, with the word air.  Spirit is man’s ‘invisible strength’, the source of good: character, virtuous intent, zeal for righteousness, The Lord Our Righteousness, The Lord Our Holiness, The Power Of JAH/ God in flesh.

Christ, when plagued and bedevilled by pharisees and Sadducees, was asked: ‘and what of Abraham?’  His reply was: ‘before Abraham was I AM!’  This is the conscious revelation, of: JAH – Lion – Man  and beyond  the comprehension of those who doubt, the omniscient presence and nature of JAH on earth;

Lion is the symbolic, without death, representation of what humankind refer to, as the spirit of man.  Christ, The Conquering Lion from Iration (Creation), ‘is’ fully aware of ‘His Godhead Divinity,’ as related in the ‘parable’ of his baptism, at the hands of His cousin John.  The Word of JAH, often referred to as a physical entity, is in fact ‘The Power of Righteous Thought’ (Psalms   29).

The revelation of His Majesty’s crucifixion (I.N.R.I), absolves the righteous, who are redeemed from the threshing floor of Judgement.  The Word, symbolically, informs us ‘water’ and ‘blood’ issued from His side; the revelation of continuity, that is: JAHLION who proceeded to hell, to subdue and conquer the Devil and his Satan, in the three-day battle of Good over Evil.  Christ’s return to earth, in glorified flesh, again is a question demanding absolute faith in the glory of JAH/ God.  The Real world will then be recognised as ‘The Invisible World’ mankind forgets, in his quest for sinful physicality; the deceitful temptations the Devil tried, in vain, to perjure His Majesty with after His forty (40) days of self-denial.

Christ’s eventual return is mapped, both, in the stars, the ‘outwardly’ celestial domain and, more importantly, here on earth: the ‘inwardly’ celestial domain, unrealised by mankind, in his haste to reconstruct the tower of Babel.  The Revelation of The Trinity, is sublimely related in Psalms eighty-seven (87): the Heaven that is Zion with ‘This’ and ‘That’ man; personifications significantly relating to only two men, in the whole history of The Creation of the earth and mankind whether, of: religion, non-religion, atheist, scientist or one who practises evil arts of The Occult.  The facts are undeniable, on both counts, as to when the Psalm was written and to whom it conspicuously refers to, in the future to come after it was written; along with Zion, whose identity is indisputable.  The Three that is One; as The Word said, ‘…let Us make man in Our image…’

Christ’s return is characterised by His irrefutable titles: The Might and Power of The Holy Trinity, The Conquering Lion from The Tribe Of Judah, The Root of David, Bearing the name Faithful and True, seated on the throne of Solomon, having a new name, with His children singing a new song; I leave it up to you to do the maths.


Why do people stick-out their tongues?

So articulately, confidently, nonchalantly

Stick-out their long tongues

It is the conscience of the world

Art of contagious habit; sticking-out

Saliva encrusted tongues

Probably started, as a cheeky

One-off gimmick

“Little do they know!”

The serpent was a subtle

Old scaly creature, pervasively

Involved with: ‘in and around

Up and down

In the earth

Knowing everyone’s business

It’s untimely feature

Sorely, Eve became confused

To the effect of this particular muse

Was weakened and left to grieve

Slithering and hissing, sticking

Out his tongue as if kissing

Still there for all to know

Spewing and spreading

Slavering and sucking

Subduing all man and his foe

Slithering and hissing

Hissing and kissing; spewing

Slavering, sucking and spreading

Subduing mankind and their ho’s

Why do people stick-out their tongues?

So articulately, confidently, nonchalantly

Stick-out their long tongues

Visiting guise of a serpent

Imitating a voracious demon

Sign of decadent culture, spent

Probably the practise of a heathen


copyright: Mar. 2012 …….Henry York


Window To That World:

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Looking and Seeing:

As I look-out this window: behold! trees, withered looking, leafless, beneficent leafy evergreens, almost yellow off-green grass; contrasting brick and mortar residues, of mankind’s contribution, stand polluting God’s infinite grace.  Finicky Sun beats carelessly on, unperturbed by his intrusive perversity.  Sound abuses the silence it shackles and imprisons: voracious car engines, interspaced with horns, honking their impatient impropriety, birds chattering and singing, and then there’s a moment’s silence: absolutely everything stops, in a moment, could have been a thousand years, for the realisation that instance brings to the closeted thoughts momentarily vanquished; stilled behind this window of light, alluding vision and interpretive respite, to: this ebullient mass of gleaned information sent hurtling, through this window of hapless interpretation.  Trying desperately to make sense: infiltrating, insighting, immersing, including, inverting absolutely everything.  And to what avail?  This intruding mass of ‘grey matter’, needing no invitation, to: take-in, soak-up, invert and induce everything into itself; making sense of veritable non-sense, calculating, categorising, culling, calming and cloning absolutely every slight piece of information gleaned, through this window of personal intuitive gratification.  A sole and personal view to, the: whirring, whizzing, churning, spinning and groanings of an uninterested world.

As I look-out this window: a world devoid of hope, lacking progressive Faith, endorsing a future without scope, for progress; populated by withering semblances of total duress, unable to find strength and Truth to confess; knowing they have created and spawned an absolute mess.

Return Of The Vampires:

For God’s sake!

What have you done?

What have you, for

Goodness sakes done?

It’s not even Poetry

And everything’s Poetry!

You sore excuse

Glory hunting

Celebrity seeking

Literary vampire

This time there’s

No mistake

You are a vestibule

Jealousy enraged hate

Pandora’s box, reborn anew

Destroying everything touched

On flower-pockled

Poe’sy Avenue

The like: obviously created

Psycho-literary bike

infidelity unadulterated

That’s what you call

Sleep: mulling concocted

Dreams – other’s nightmares

And You dare, You actually

Dare: to call yourself a poet


copyright: Mar. 2012 ….. Henry York

A Picture Postcard

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Questions We Ask:

Do you have to sleep at night, with drug-addicted prostitutes hawking their wares under your bedroom window?  Sit in your sick mother’s bedroom, watching: twelve (12), thirteen (13), fourteen (14) year old hoodlums, trading: Heroin, Crack and, or Crystal Meth. to hapless ‘self-harmers’ mentally trapped, in a hell they are powerless to prevent?  Have you lived three(3) years, with children under five (5) and a mother who surreptitiously, and to excellent effect, keeps it a self-denigrating secret?  Do you go to the police station, alerting them of the above facts, on a day-to-day basis, of which they are fully aware and, admittedly, powerless to intervene?  How many times do you sit watching television, listening to live gunshots discarded outside your front door.  What do you care about hoodlums carrying their ‘packaged sweets’ to school everyday?  Columbine and those other ‘misadventures’ have permeated and are physically present, in the real; not isolated aberrations of, one in a million, psychotic abnormalities.  Who are you?  Knowing everything, and totally unaware of the condition you are in fact living in.  These are the symptoms and situations comprising Postmodernistic England U.K.  I write this communique, in a close on defunct language-form, for those disconnected out of touch, forty and over, doubters of  ‘The Real’ and the world it has spawned.  These times sport an advanced and technologically improvised form, of the English language, leaving senile dinosaurs in veritable limbo.

Neo-Roman Hypocrisy:

Let us travel worldwide

Affording little over five

Minutes or so, to do it

Floating over a minimised globe

Virtual uncaring for life’s habituates

Horrendously synchronised ladders

perpetuate classified incongruities

Soiling unity, with accompanying

Merchants of doom

Fleecing an unwary populace

Heartless insufferance dogs a trail

Littered with: greed, self-prominence

Systematic manipulation, and deception

Singularly, individuals piece continents

Exaggeratingly underplayed

In cake-sharing mode

Personalities with simple-minded characteristics

Hypocondriase and nurse-maid their own

Mimicking ingrained prototypes

Infused through electromagnetic time zones

Mammon’s triumph cites affluence’s rejoicing

As one epitomizes power born to adorn

Elitist stereotypes who consolidate wealth

Repetitive recriminations of capitalism

Bastion of all Babylon represents

An overpopulated oyster the

Entire has unquestionably become

Fading unrealised ruined Carthage

Setting in the heart of Rome

An extinguished, failed sun

Incriminating invisible pantheon

Harbouring pagan figureheads

Cursed insidious crowns

Glossed to obscurity

Hierarchical vibrations diffuses

Assumingly inducted all that is

So this is what Mother Earth descended

Unerringly to?  Circulated emanations of

Silent cruelty; her guardians deflowered

Virginal beauty, notwithstanding serene

Innocence: companions of hate and

Surrepticion.  Pealing flesh from defenceless

Seasons of trusting support systems

Demons continue stalking dry plains

Once verdant myriad fruit

Bearing trees, pockled with life


copyright: Mar.  2012 ….  Henry York


Exposing Elitist Hypocrisy

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The Nature of  Poe’sy:considered new poetry

So this debilitating mirage continues, Poe’sy ostracized, renounced and devalued; they haven’t heard, or considered New poetry, how she houses the latest chat.  Concerning linguistics in the literary and educational establishments under attack.  Pouring slight on Lyotard, who distinguished high and low societies.  This hypocrisy will travel abroad, condemning those gilt-edged academies.  Usurping age-old foundations; devising new much needed revenue streams.  Exposing the nature of metaphors and alliteration.  What a way the system start flounder, History expertly slayed; inducing disruption, discontinuity, disorder; high culture dismantled and played.  Now, ‘where do you go to my…’ ugly, when your defiled and curtailed.  Your credibility questioned, deemed unseemly: Justice finally prevailed.  Talking ’bout Baudrillard, Foucault, Fukuyama, theorists who made me well read: Freud, Lacan, said and Kristeva, for goodness sakes history is dead.  Poe’sy’s flower of necessary information consumes me, invading my very head; alter-ego original poetry, opposition quickly went to bed.  I don’t want to be obnoxious but I’ve no time to make apologies.  Will, Inevitably, remain conscious, introducing literary psychology.  I won’t continue this tirade, Lord knows!  I done enough damage.  Defending the weak and poor, poverty’s crusade; reversing all trends and disadvantage.

Lost In Transit:

Demons pursue pre-fabricated trajectories

Sucking-out spleen through intestines of

Fallen misshapen Valkyries

Light, in the distance, shines incandesce

With blatant finality

Bright: suffering nil resistance

Placing people under duress

Pressure on the most insignificant extremity 

The evening before morning of death’s demise

Armageddons dearth

Development of death and destruction 

Life’s not based on coincidence

Neither fuled through

Meticulous planning

Infinite points of reference

Borne by natures eventual functioning

Streaming lines exude definitive consciousness

Selective emanations mental prowess

Sum total of human participation

Exciting extensive spiritual incarceration

In the mind’s eye

Simply making adults cry


Scenes of chaotic aberration

Enforced despotic altercation

Tuesdays good, especially rhyming

A day in fact

Lost all sense of timing

Realize Wednesday, keep track

Lost souls fleetingly fry

Throughout long dry

Bitter sweet nights

Persistent perpetrators

Dubbed hell riders

Hound mindless minions to flight

And what of that dark deep

Unfathomable hole that reckons?

Sad decrepit apparition

Forlorn, awaiting judgement

Unwavering Toll eventually beckons


copyright: Mar. 2012 …. Henry York …




Communing With Angels:

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Under Poe’sy’s Spell:

 And he said to me, as far as your eye’ can see, seeping from unreserved knowledge trees: slackening all belts, loosening fat, bilious perturbed bellies.  Many will call, for relief, seconds before night actually falls; those despicable reprobates, suffering unexplainable grief, diving headlong, to escape excruciating pain; queuing at Hell’s gate.  Some will scream repeatedly “thief, thief,’ voices unsure, definitely strong, hoping to abjure those exciting gain for consciences to inexplicably alleviate:all that had gone before, crying abjectly ” no-more, no-more, doing our best to even the score.  For all we had done, judgement has come, wickedness will run.  Thy kingdom bereft, for division has cleft, all we could quite conceivably have left, as remorseful sinews holding together iniquities pitiful virtues.”  So ungrateful judge, as far as cows ‘chew the cud,’ let us quietly be attempting, to attempt virtuously, to carry our burden of guilt.  The infinite gallons of blood voraciously spilt, consigning wretched souls to mind-absorbed hell; awaiting the toll of Quasimodo’s silent, invisible bell.

Rainy Season:

Angry clouds flit menacingly

Across dark foreboding skies

Rains beckon warning smiles

Too early: for parched, hungry ground

Birds pollute trees

Noisily complaining; impending slaughter

Threatening featherless, fledgling innocents

Unwavering deluge open heavens

Windows without care, or thought

Budding seedlings drown; tadpoles

Gleefully enjoy puddled acres

Swelling avariciously large, bloated

Mature saplings silently disdain

Heavy leaves sharing, weight laden

Glistening surprises

April rains grace winter-free

Minions again; sods issue through

parapets, folds hurriedly prepare

Springing green curtly clasped envelopes

Awaiting greedily, blessings proffered

Sunlight’s covert aggregation, willing

Soil-wrapped inkling, bursting from

Softened, yielding accommodating ground.


copyright: Mar. 2012 ….. Henry York


Zephaniah: roodbwoy Poet extraordinaire

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Vortex interview: part 1.

We were all very excited, Iman especially, because BZ. had worked his way up to become a leading light, in the world of academia and poetry; well unpretentious about it as well.  For me, it was another step on the road to become what BZ. was quite easily proving he was; didn’t have to attend uni. summer school two years running, or enroll for three years imprisonment on a ‘snooty’ degree course either.  My bed was already made so I was trying my damnedest to suffer myself and, at least, enjoy the prelim before October and the start of my freshman days; I was forty (40) years old, for goodness sakes, fresh-faced, as ever but not a kid.  The interview had been planned to perfection, we were going to ‘get in’, his gig, free as well; what a coup.  My poetry was coming along, ‘A Day In The Life,’ was published, cheat, in Vortex and gonna be in the same mag. as this hallowed interview, with ‘The Don Gorgon’ himself; nice promotion for a little up and unknown coming like me.  The performance was close on immaculate, would have been perfect but the audience was small, due to the size of the gallery, the man himself was ‘more than extra,’ yet he should have been housed in a much bigger place.  Poetry BZ style was a ‘black thing still’ and it was Nineteen ninety-eight (1998).  I went to see Mykey Smith, at Primrose Hill, Max Farrar was there, and I wrote a ‘serious’ poem about it but it’s never left my bag, to this day; Mykey was the bomb, the all-told everything, a true poetic legend.

So! To the interview: Benjamin Obadiah Iqbal Zephaniah was born in Birmingham 1958 (same year as me!), he cannot remember a time when he was not creating poetry but this had nothing to do with school, where poetry meant very little to him, in fact he finished full-time education at the age of thirteen (13).  however, by the age of fifteen (15) he had gained a reputation in his home town of Birmingham, as a young poet who was capable of speaking on local and international issues.  In the nineteen nineties (1990’s) his book publication and record releases have increased to over thirty (30) but he has concentrated on performing outside of Europe. He feels at home anywhere the oral tradition is strong and he lists: South Africa, Zimbabwe, India, Pakistan and Columbia as some of the most memorable tours .  Over a twenty (20) day period in nineteen ninety-one (1991) he performed on every continent on the planet.

His plays have been widely performed and he has presented and been the subject of several TV. documentaries.  His records include: ‘The Big Boys,’  ‘Don’t Make Girls Cry,’ ‘Free South Africa’ (with The Wailers), ‘Rasta,’ ‘Dub Ranting,’and ‘Us and Dem.’  His books, include: ‘Rasta Time In Palestine,’  ‘The Dread Affair’ and ‘City Psalms.’

Vort-X met BZ. as he finished a recital of his poetry at Leeds City Art Gallery.  His poems included a look at the light-hearted flirtations between the sexes; a humourous take on Martin Luther King’s ‘I have a dream speech,’ called ‘I have a scheme’ in which he highlights the more cheesy elements  of a potential multi-racial future; words about how quickly the people who had been involved  in apartheid forgot their role within it , once the regime had been dismantled, called ‘ A piss take of the blind optimism of the Don’t Worry, Be Happy song,’ and the broader issue of denial which it represents; a rant about apathy called, ‘What Has That Got To Do With Me?’, finishing off with a poem about the irrepressible rhythms and spirit of reggae music, in the face of a harsh world, called: ‘I Can’t Get The Reggae Out Me Head’.  The focal point of the performance was a poem dedicated to Joy Gardner, who died while in police custody during her extradition for being an illegal alien.  The policemen involved were tried for her murder.  It was found that during her stay in custody, she had a body belt put on, was placed in leg irons and had her head taped.  The policemen were let off, as the force they used was justified, due to the level of resistance it was claimed she put up against her arrest.  BZ’s poem encapsulated his feelings about the person and the way, this particular course of Justice had run. 

Overall, his performance, was: captivating, humourous, thought-provoking and, ultimately, inspirational.  BZ was generous enough to spare some of his time, to talk to Vort-x:

Vort-x: We were surprised at how much humour you used in the performance of your poetry.

BZ: Yeah me too.  Sometimes I get on and just feel like having a laugh, but in my funny poems there is a serious message.  In ‘White Comedy’ for example, there’s a serious message.  In ‘The ‘Wrong song,’ there’s a serious message underlying it.  In ‘I have a scheme’  there’s a serious message and I think some times you can say something which is serious but you can case it in humour.  Other times I go on I’ll say something a lot more serious.  It depends on what mood I’m in.  I always have a very serious bit in the middle, no matter what happens.  There was one time when the guy who was introducing me said, “I would like to introduce you to one of the greatest comedians on earth, Benjamin Zephaniah.” I wanted to punch his face in.  I have nothing against them personally but I never want to be known as a comedian. I’m a poet who has some humour in my poetry.

Mykey Smith:

For all my time in Primrose Hill hall

That night; I watched him very close

Until the curtain began to fall, his

Star had shone very bright.  My

Favourite is: ‘Me ca’an believe it,’ what

An incredible offering.  Angry

Pent-up, hating spirit, honed to an

Edge, for that Babylon visit; words of

Wisdom, he was effortlessly proffering.

Other poets skilfully and artfully

Performed, only he actively and

Demonstrably quelled the storm.

Me?  An avid, able scholar learning

My academic trade; networking and

Watching, assimilating a master

Determined, one day, to eventually

Make the grade.

He was meagre, skinny as a rake

Exuding vehemence and danger; a

Shark marooned in a tranquil, peaceful

Lake.  His expert control and use of

Elusive genotext, wilfully sold and bruised

Never before heard, kind of literary

Effect.  A swift, unceasing epitome, of

Streetlifes burgeoning economy


copyright:  Mar.  2012 ….. Henry York




New Historicism: reviewing Shakespeare

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Representing  Monarchy:   (Part:   3)

The leisure market thrived in earnest, as Nagler’s visitor from Switzerland testified:

[E]very day at two o’ clock in the afternoon in the city

of London two sometimes three comedies are performed

at separate places, wherewith folk make merry together

and whichever does best gets the greatest audiences

(Nagler, A. M.  1952)


We  now witness a thriving, competitive, leisure and arts industry (leisure creating the demand) systematically determined by a group of capital conscious men.  Shakespeare was a member of these early entrepreneurs; they became influential business, wielding significant power.  ;… [A]s he prospered his purchases of Stratford properties are recorded… some of his London lodgings … have retired to his fine Stratford house … New Place … ‘ (Brookes, J.  1986.  P.  1)

The court was the obvious seat of power, so the repositories of instruction, The Queens ‘agents’, when appearing at court, would melt away to inconsequentiality.  Shakespeare ‘held his own,’ his productivity alone demanded status and attention, his plays were invariably performed at court.  Whilst enjoying, no doubt , the celebrity status accorded to those  permitted, to be in close proximity to the throne; he would also have been a target for hierarchical manipulation.  Equally, at times, he may have regretted being so close to the ‘ Virgin Queen.’  ‘…Essex returned, not bringing rebellion broached … but himself to perish …’ (Shakespeare, W.   1968.  p. 7.)  A suggestion may be, Essex could have ‘fallen foul’ of Royal favour, because of his much publicised failure; it must be said, Shakespeare wasn’t himself connected with Essex, although his patron Southampton was.

Shakespeare played an important part in the Queen’s propaganda machine.  This position helped to influence his work, ‘… Immediately changing it, so that it no longer represents a foreign body within…’ (Williams, R.  1968.  p320.)  Shakespeare’s commercial/ business habitat: at court and along the ‘raucous’ banks of the, then, disreputable Thames, allowed him to keep an extremely high-profile.  The public renditions, in contrast to very private Royal performances, offered sites of potential resistance: one has to bear in mind, state apparatus had already changed and continued to do so.  It was now a fully functioning administrative machine, offering sites of discipline and control – as Henry’s (V) ‘primitive  model demonstrates in the text – within forces of ideological coercion, combined with religio-hegemonic oppression.

Elizabeth can be forgiven, for employing many ‘agents’ performing covert enterprises of surveillance; she employed, what has been termed, an ‘economy of visibility.’  The population ‘at large’ harboured grand illusions of what Royalty may, or may not have been.  Elizabeth, in employing a particular strategy, developed a mystique.  She created a social ‘hunger,’ developing a public need for information, pertaining to ‘their’ monarch.  In order to further the illusions, Shakespeare skilfully attempted to ‘conjure-up’ state manufactured images, alluding to Royalty, actually instituting ‘post-hypnotic’ signifiers of subservience; definitive elements of social control, ignited in ‘The Real.’ 



Doting ewes pick real

Rooted grass; lambs

Flicker, fleck, bounding

En masse.  Throes!

April’s promise; foregoing

Joy’s gracious purchase

Bulging pregnant trees

Distill favour: verdant

Leaves, wearing crowns

A’glow, instinctively

Signal voyeurs order

Witness Nature’s annual

Picture show; Complimenting

Vision, Poet’s Wordflow.


copyright: mar.  2012 … henry York …





















New Historicism: reviewing Shakespeare

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Representing Monarchy: (part  2).

My essay will expose representational aspects of monarchy, within areas of the Shakespearean canon: Henry V. and Hamlet, in particular, are to be my textual sites of inquiry.  Shakespeare alludes to royal protocol: emphasising court behaviour and expectations, facets of his character’s make-up defining royalty, court life, as a whole, and the issue of protocol.  In so doing, he initiates readers awareness of sacrifices involved, fulfilling  roles of monarchical responsibilities, especially so in Henry V.  Hamlet, however, is reduced to ‘aspects’ of royalty during the breakdown of royal protocol, exhibiting resultant loss of dignity.  I intend to critically analyse points in presentation, deduced from players and audiences, foreseen to emanate directly as a result of royal protocol, or derived from respect for royalty.  Williams (R) says, ‘the immediate dramatic situation and some more general social institution in which kinds of rule governed discourse are practised…’ (Williams, R.  1983. p. 33.) ‘…situated a relationship existing in the confines of Elizabeth’s court, between: The Empress and her functional ‘propaganda machine,’ issuing crucial modes of power dissemination.  The Foucauldian premise of, power relationships detailing the fluctuating pecking order, comprising: favorites, expendable, inexpendable, valued and necessary personalities.

Plays were performed at a time-juncture, when the reading populace was in a very substantial minority.  So much so, dramatic emphasis and textuality was beholden to, and judged on clarity in performance.  The Globe theatre was located in a grossly disreputable area of South London, an area of notoriety which had developed a sullied reputation: ‘…the bank had a “naughty” quality due to the long line of brothels along the edge…’ (Nagler. A. M.  1952.  P. 113.)  and served to elicit further condemnation for its improprieties from municipal authorities.  One could quite easily assume an area, seething with covert practices and financial transactions would foster, a near commercial atmosphere, with: leisure, literature and Foucault’s definitive ‘subjugated body, all categorised as materials of productive value.  Situations exactly identical to the present day, except for sheer: scale, size, times and technological innovation. 

The actors would, inevitably, develop a ‘certain’ familiarity with audiences, cultivating ensuing socially effective power relationships.  Such relationships cannily centred on individual materially enhanced status, of prospective productivity value; telling forms of ‘Foucaldian currency,’ alluded to by Greenblatt, initiating the early days – and they were – of commercially viable literary and artistic production, supported equally by middle and lower class members of The Social.  Shakespeare may have been a fluctuating personality; he was a minor member at court it seems, the Bankside being home to the lower reaches of society.  Nagler seems to support this idea, implying a fairly wide cross-section of the social populace frequented these theatres placed in ‘seedy’ areas: ‘In the autumn of 1599. Thomas Platter, a visitor from Basel… he made references… scale of admission prices… in Elizabethan theatres.’ (Nagler, A. M. 1952. p. 117).  A scale of admission prices determines , seemingly without doubt, a leisure commodity catering for class differentiation.  In all probability, yes!  My lecturer/ tutor actually advises me to err on the better side of caution, because there has been much debate about the social composition of renaissance theatre audiences; an important cultural imperative for this study.


Sonnet For The Righteous:

Seeking truth earnestly, is difficult

One soulfully searches the heart for light

Purgatorial guilt primes self-assault

Scowling darkness pervades a smile, once bright

Diligently tracing retribution

Invoking a millstone of sinful thought

Nailed upon your cross of prostitution

 Deceiving victims already distraught

 Your humble heart is almost piteous

Wallow, as you do, in self-denial

Abstention – cum – righteous is pretentious

Likened, to ‘wicked sons of Belial.’

Happiness fraught with insecurity

Cedes a life, filled with sadness and pity


copyright: Mar. 2012 …. Henry York …..



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